What has been your contribution to your client’s profit zone?
To mark a percentage of contribution to the client’s profits may not be feasible in approximate figures. However, the expenses incurred by the client for the support services, will definitely remain steady during the contract period. If we are taking up a contract for a year or three-year period, the cost of inputs billed by us remain constant despite market fluctuations. Minimum wages is revised every six months, but we work on the same wage structure agreed upon with the client till the end of the year. Hence, the costs are finalized taking fluctuations into consideration and in a way it does away with the need to revise cost, which is an additional burden on the client. Working on these terms in itself is a major contribution to the client’s profit zone.
How has the journey been for Sunbeam?
The service industry in India is unfortunately highly unorganized; hence it has been a roller-coaster ride for us. Service companies have largely been viewed as housekeeping outfits; hence convincing clients about the concept of support services which encompass Facilities Management, Fleet Management, MEP, Guest Houses, Facility Services and others, has been tough.
We provide a bouquet of services, and clients can chose from housekeeping, maintenance, manpower, drivers (in the case of logistics and transport), guest house contract management, driver or office staff, and so on. We started off in 2005 with a gamut of services; but the service segment being unorganized, clients were reluctant to put all their eggs in one basket. We took time to educate client companies, and now are being accepted for the services we provide.
What make Sunbeam successful today is TCS. It is one of the key pillars on which we’re built. In practice, this begins with a thorough understanding of a customer’s business objectives and goals. Once these are defined and communicated to the relevant management teams, a unique strategy is put into place. On this strategy, layers of service are built up and executed 24×7 to ensure that the customer’s objectives are fulfilled. Single point contact, periodic performance reviews, delivery team meetings and constant floor-level communication ensures total customer satisfaction levels are adhered to.
While there is no dearth of manpower supply in India, we do need to shortlist and select manpower with specific skills, for specified jobs. If it is for the airport terminal, we place only skilled workers who are trained to talk, project themselves and deliver. Our back office staff is engaged in hiring manpower precisely for such specific tasks.
In general, we source manpower that is already engaged and experienced in the field. However, for specific client requirements, we provide training at reputed training centers.
In case of specialized jobs, we also recruit candidates through placing advertisements in select media. Where soft services are concerned, our staff trains them on-site.
Training and placing manpower on the job is one aspect, but constant follow up is essential for consistent work performance. TCS training is imparted to every Sunbeam employee on the very day of joining. Standards are documented and constantly reviewed feedback / complaint processes are put into place to ensure service delivery. Our TCS focus has enabled us grow, expand our service suite and acquire some of the biggest names in the country’s manufacturing, business and service segments.
Which are the segments Sunbeam is dealing with? What has been your experience?
Clients today are looking for a viable and long-standing working partner for value addition. We are working with reputed clients in the private, government and semi- government sectors; across all horizontals and verticals. Some of our relationships are over seven years’ old.
We have clients across segments from airports to seaports; logistics to retail to software; banking to communications and more. In IT, we provide facility as well as soft services. We currently support the Mumbai Airport (MIAL), where we provide a workforce for driver movement and management, golf car drivers, conveyor belt attendants, loading-unloading staff; both at the old and new terminals.
At the seaport, we support five companies in the container freight station around Panvel and JNPT, where we manage the entire container movement.
On the retail front, we are engaged with a number of retail stores, for whom we provide end-to-end facility management services, manpower, front-end sale staff and backend staff as well. Payroll management is another activity being offered to a few of our clients.
In the manufacturing segment, we manage the entire production line in Bhiwandi, Mumbai, right from the raw material, through the finished product, to dispatch. We also take up cleaning of high end guesthouses and bungalows attached to corporates, on a one-time project basis.
In Fleet Management, we have two engagement models. One is drivers that we offer for MIAL vehicles. The second is for logistics companies, where we take on the entire fleet management – right from providing drivers, to staffing and vehicle maintenance.
We currently drive around 300 trucks for logistics company’s and 120 vehicles for the airport. This support service is highly challenging in terms of manpower – engaging drivers, meeting their expectations, ensuring minimal accidents and fatality cases, and above all – retaining them. We have a strong communication system, where supervisors play a vital role in terms of constant follow-ups. Sunbeam today manages close to 100 clients across India.